UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called on the Group of 20(G20) to devise a “wartime plan” that would include a stimulus package worth trillions of dollars to help poor countries battle the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the Associated Press, the UN chief said in a letter to G20 leaders on Tuesday that the group accounts for 85 percent of the world’s gross domestic product and has “a direct interest and critical role to play in helping developing countries cope with the crisis.”
Guterres added that the G20 must create the conditions and mobilize the resources necessary to ensure that developing countries have equal opportunities to respond to this crisis. He warned that “anything short of this commitment would lead to a pandemic of apocalyptic proportions.”
Stressing that “this is the time for solidarity not exclusion,” the UN chief called on the G20 leaders to establish a coordinated response to suppress the coronavirus everywhere, guided by the World Health Organization.
UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said G20 leaders are expected to hold a virtual summit meeting Thursday, adding that Guterres is set to attend.